Explore the Courthouse Reserve

The Courthouse Reserve is a community space where people walk their dogs, picnic with family, and explore the reserve, that’s been established since 1839.

As you enter the Courthouse Reserve from the High Street, you can see the 19th-century Courthouse and Police Station, which houses the Courthouse and Police Museum. Behind this building is the former Mounted Police Stables, now the Willunga Slate Museum, which is the only one of its kind in Australia. Examples of Willunga slate can be seen around the reserve in the slate tanks, the slate flags on the Courthouse veranda, and the slate culvert in the property next door if you look to your left at the creek.

You will see a bridge at the creek that gives entry to the Courthouse Nature Reserve. Why not follow the circular walking trail through the woodland to the top of the hill and back? See if you can find the plaque commemorating the Government Hut, a building where public officials stayed when visiting Willunga. One of our famous visitors was Lady Jane Franklin. The walk is approximately 30 minutes in duration. This Nature Reserve is a pocket of grassy woodland, representing the natural, pre-European landscape of Willa-ungga, which was the name given to Willunga by the traditional owners, the Kaurna people.

The Courthouse Reserve used to be known as the Government Reserve and was the site for the police, surveyors, and post office. In 1855, the heritage-listed Courthouse and Police Station was constructed, and the Mounted Police Stables were built in 1864. The property is leased and maintained by the Willunga Branch, with the support of the present owner, the City of Onkaparinga.

Willunga National Trust Courthouse Heritage Building.

Testimonials

It was great to read and see items from the early days, and imagine what it must have been like. Australia is great to learn about.

Rebecca Hilman

Beautiful historic building & friendly volunteers.

Kerry Edwards

Thank you seems inadequate. Our daughters wedding on Saturday 16th December was beautiful. The work, effort and care put in by the museum staff was above and beyond. We could not have asked for better. Everyone had a wonderful time and will remember it for many years to come. The set up was beautiful and efficient, whilst being flexible to the needs and wishes of the bride and groom. The setting was idyllic, peaceful and stunning. Thank you so much.

Renny Goodwin

Educational and good value for history buffs. Beautiful, old local stone buildings as can be seen in much of the Willunga area. Local volunteers are very helpful and can provide much info about the area including the shipwreck history, Star of Greece, at Port Willunga. You might even be lucky to visit when there is a walk and explanation by one of the volunteers. Very pleasant grounds complete the experience.

Grant

Friendly staff and 2 interesting displays (courthouse n slate museum). Lovely setting.

Henry Monshall

My wife and I got married here over the weekend, nothing was ever too difficult for Judith and her team. They bent over backwards to make sure our day was as special as it could be and we had an incredible ceremony on the lawns of the historic courthouse. We would highly recommend this place if you are considering it for a wedding. We would like to give a massive thanks once again to Judith.

Nick Stone

Very historic and well maintained heritage site.

Good for kids and a must see for willunga visitors. Go for a picnic.

Mick M

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Willunga National Trust Basil Leaf

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